2004-07-02 / Front Page

Simon To Lead Beach Rules Rally, July 13

By Brian Magoolaghan

Simon To Lead Beach Rules Rally, July 13


Last year’s “Take Back The Beach” rally drew about 1,000 people to Beach 116 Street.Last year’s “Take Back The Beach” rally drew about 1,000 people to Beach 116 Street.

By Brian Magoolaghan

Rockaway’s Professional Protester Lew Simon is holding another beach rules rally in response to the growing number of summonses issued by police and parks enforcement officers.

The rally, which is pending approval by the police department, is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, July 13 at 7:30 p.m. on the boardwalk at Beach 116 Street.

As a prelude to the protest, Simon’s second in as many summers, the Democratic District Leader will also host a town hall meeting with Norman Siegel, a noted Manhattan civil rights attorney, at the Good Government Regular Democratic Club, 112-20 Beach Channel Drive, on Friday, July 9 at 7:45 p.m.

Siegel, the former director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, is "upset, troubled and concerned," by the news of beach and boardwalk enforcement in Rockaway and has agreed to investigate what he said appears to be a city-wide double standard with regard to enforcement.

Siegel is eager to "meet with people, hear their grievances and look at their summonses," he said.

Last year’s "Take Back The Beach" rally, held on July 9, drew about 1,000 angry residents to Beach 116 Street. Some of them held signs that read "Ticket Beach" while others followed Simon, who chanted "Whose beach? Our Beach!"

The day after that rally, City Councilman Joe Addabbo Jr.’s office was flooded with calls, but the councilman said he needed to hear from a majority of people and not the outspoken few who took issue with enforcement of a long list of beach restrictions. No changes to the rules have been made.

"I think we have to be more organized this time," said Silverman, who will also attend the rally.

The 2003 rally, sparked in part by a Fourth of July incident in which a number of Belle Harbor residents were summonsed and arrested, drew citywide media attention to Rockaway Beach with the daily papers and network television and radio stations reporting a disparity in alcohol enforcement in Rockaway. But some locals felt that the alcohol issues blurred the focus on other rules governing dogs on the beach, unattended items, swimming after hours and others.


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